BRANDOLAND: Talking to God...For You!

Friday, December 02, 2005

The Case of the Missing Explosives

Yo.

Is it December?

Damn.

This is just a rumour, but according to the Washington Note...
Barbara Bush is allegedly TICKED off at Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Andy Card, nearly all of them -- except Karen Hughes -- for how her boy is faring in the hearts and minds of Americans.

The matriarch of the Bush clan is colder than North Pole ice right now to those around her son who she thinks have undermined him.
That's her normal state.

Right?
I'll tell who my sources are if Patrick Fitzgerald gives a call and makes me -- but the sources are very close to Poppa Bush (41), who has been traveling a bit with some of his old entourage, including Brent Scowcroft and others of the first Bush regime.
Hmm: Babs is on the rampage.

Wouldn't want to face that bear.

Would you?

"Why should we hear about body bags and deaths? It's not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?"

"Almost everyone I've talked to says, 'We're going to move to Houston.' What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality."

"And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them."

Moving on...

10 Marines Killed in Bombing Near Fallujah

10 MARINES, people:
WASHINGTON - Ten Marines were killed and 11 wounded by a roadside bomb near Fallujah, Iraq, in one of the deadliest attack on American troops in recent months, the Marine Corps announced on Friday.

A brief statement said the Marines were from Regimental Combat Team 8, of the 2nd Marine Division. They were hit Thursday by a roadside bomb, which the military calls an improvised explosive device, made from several large artillery shells, the Marines said.

The Marines were on a foot patrol outside of Fallujah, about 30 miles west of Baghdad.
Alright.

Time to put on my tinfoil hat.

Everytime I read a story about a roadside bomb killing a Marine or a US soldier, my mind goes back to this CNN article (dated October 27, 2004):

Disappearance of explosives in question

Excerpts:
(CNN) -- The disappearance of nearly 380 tons of sophisticated explosives in Iraq remained in question Tuesday and continued to be an issue in the presidential campaign.

*

Pentagon officials acknowledged there was a window of about six weeks after the invasion of Iraq when the stockpile could have been stolen from the sprawling facility near Baghdad.

They argued it is more likely, however, that the explosives were moved before the war began March 19, 2003.

The Iraqi government notified U.N. nuclear monitors in early October that an explosives stockpile was missing from the Al Qaqaa arms depot, blaming the disappearance on looting that followed the collapse of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's government in April 2003.

The news of the missing stockpile was reported by several media outlets soon after the invasion, but the issue resurfaced Monday when The New York Times reported the Iraqi letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog organization.

In the letter, dated October 10, the interim government blamed "the theft and looting of the governmental installations due to lack of security."

The explosives, considered powerful enough to demolish buildings and detonate nuclear warheads, were well known before the war and had been sealed by U.N. inspectors, the IAEA said.
Powerful enough to kill 10 Marines?

Now...

My questions to you, dear reader: Have any of these "missing explosives" been used against our troops?

If so, how many?

Did the insurgents snag the explosives before or after the fall of Baghdad?

And if the explosives were snagged before the invasion, do you think the "Saddamists" (Bush's term, not mine) planned this insurgency "ahead of time?"

Hmm?

Remember, "Rasta say, 'He who runs from fight today, lives to fight another day.'"

And if I pass an arms depot while I'm running to the hills, I'm grabbing a couple of, uh, things for the next fight.

"You mean...like in Halo?"

Yes.

"Metal Gear?"

Yes.

"Doom."

Enough!
The IAEA said Tuesday the last time it can vouch for the presence of the explosives at Al Qaqaa was in March 2003, before the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam.

IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said the agency warned U.S. officials in May 2003 that U.N. inspectors feared the site might have been looted.

On May 27, inspectors with the Iraq Survey Group -- the CIA-Pentagon task force set up to account for Saddam's suspected weapons programs -- arrived to inspect the compound and did not find the stockpile.

In an interview with the London-based Arabic newspaper al-Hayat, Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said it "looks to me like somehow the multinational force didn't stay on top of this."
Final question: Are these two stories - the case of the mising explosives and the latest roadside bombing - related?

Your opinions, please.

Back to the article about the 10 Marines:
Fallujah had been a stronghold of the insurgents until U.S. forces, led by Marines, assaulted the city in November 2004.

Since then the U.S. military and the Iraqi government have been working to rebuild the city and limit the return of insurgents.
Limit the return of the insurgents?!

Man.

Is that what we're doing now? "Limiting" the return of the insurgents?!

On that note, some final thoughts from Zbigniew Brzezinski, Jimmy Carter's fomer National Security Advisor:
Q: Do you think the Iraqi army is going to be ready soon?

ZB: I think our course with the Iraqi forces verges on the absurd. It is all about us training them.

The question arises: Training them to do what?

If it is a matter of knowing how to use a Kalishnikov in order to kill other people, I think most military-aged Iraqis don’t need our training.

If it is a question of training Iraqis so they behave and act like American soldiers, that’s well and good. Except that is not what is needed in the circumstances we will be bequeathing them.

What is needed is motivation based on loyalty to the powers that be.

That will mean loyalty to various Shiite militias with a clerical connotation and loyalty to the two major Kurdish formations. Plus, perhaps eventually, loyalty to some Sunni militias based on a tribal allegiance.

The motivation is not going to be created by American sergeants who are -- quote, unquote -- "training" them how to behave like American soldiers.
No snarky comment.

More later...

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